This is our review of the Platinum Wing lounge at Helsinki Airport. It is Finnair’s flagship lounge in Helsinki, and was refurbished in mid-2019.
If you fly Finnair from Helsinki to the UK (BA has dropped the route) and you have a British Airways Gold card, you can use this exceptional lounge. A business class ticket is not good enough – you must have top tier BA or oneworld status.
As you’ll see, it’s almost worth the trip just to try it out.
I was in Helsinki on a Finnair press trip to Tallinn. I’ll be covering more of the trip in the coming days.
Where is the Finnair Platinum Wing at Helsinki?
The Platinum Wing is in the non-Schengen part of the terminal so you’ll have to clear immigration after security.
If you follow the signs towards gate 52 you’ll eventually see signs for the lounge. It is a bit of a trot from immigration, but you’ll soon see the white exterior and signage.
The lounge is currently open from 11am until 5:30pm.
Inside the Finnair Platinum Wing
There are actually two lounges here. You need to get your boarding pass scanned at reception, before continuing left to the Platinum Wing. The business class lounge is on the right.
Once inside you’re greeted by a lovely large, light-filled space with a 360-degree bar at its centre:
Everything is included, and the Champagne on pour is Joseph Perrier, including a rosé:
Behind the bar you’ll find a range of high tables next to frosted glass windows:
(Are these real windows? I’m not sure. They could be just be very convincing light boxes mimicking daylight, as appears to be the case in the sauna. It certainly fooled me if so!)
Behind this is a quieter, more casual area away from the noisier areas of the lounge.
On the other side of the bar you’ll find some more armchairs and individual booths:
Connectivity throughout the lounge is exceptional – I’ve rarely seen so many (European) plug sockets and USB ports. They are at virtually every seat.
Next to this is the dining area with seating for about 30 people.
The lounge staff will seat you and take your order, and there is a little self-serve buffet available as well for smaller items, salads and desserts (more on that below.)
Next to the dining area is another small room that feels more cosy and ‘loungey’. It also has views across the tarmac:
In total, Finnair says there is room for about 155 people in the Platinum Wing which feels about right. It certainly wasn’t busy or full whilst I was there – there were plenty of seats available wherever you wanted. The busiest area was the dining room.
Food and drink in the Finnair Platinum Wing
As mentioned above, the dining area offers table service in addition to a small buffet.
All the main courses are table-service only and cooked to order – you can actually see them cooking your burger whilst you wait. On the menu whilst I was there were:
- Warm salmon salad
- Mushroom risotto
- Reindeer burger
- Beyond burger
Whilst I was sorely tempted by the reindeer burger I was still stuffed from breakfast, so I opted for the salmon salad which was tasty:
I did manage to have a taste of a reindeer burger and it seemed good!
Yes, there is a sauna!
One of the unique features of the Platinum Wing is the small sauna. Whilst it’s not the only airport lounge to feature a sauna – one of the Air France lounges in Paris does too, apparently – it’s certainly a novelty and something I definitely wanted to try whilst there.
Access is via male and female changing rooms, which also feature two showers. Unlike most airport lounges, you do not have to book the showers as they are in a locker-room style room:
There are two shower cubicles, stocked with L:A Bruket amenities:
The sauna is just off a shared cooling off room, between the two changing rooms. You can see the door to the sauna on the far right:
It is not particularly large – you’d probably be able to squeeze in three people – but it was not busy when I went. I imagine most people, especially those on shorter layovers, do not know it is there or use it.
If you’ve forgotten your swimwear don’t worry – you can wrap yourself in one of the many towels provided. Slippers are also available:
The only thing missing is a centrifugal dryer for swimwear and little plastic bags. There are other clever touches, however, including the power sockets inside the lockers so you can charge your devices whilst you relax.
Who can use the Finnair Platinum Wing?
The Platinum Wing is a little unusual, because it is effectively a first class lounge even though Finnair doesn’t operate a first class cabin. It is reserved for top tier Finnair and oneworld frequent flyers.
You do not need to be flying Finnair to access the Platinum Wing, although chances are you will be. The only requirement is that you be flying a oneworld carrier (such as Japan Airlines, American Airlines, Cathay Pacific or British Airways) with the relevant status. If you are flying in business class without top tier status, you only have access to the business class lounge.
Anyone with oneworld Emerald (ie. British Airways Executive Club Gold) can access the lounge, even if you are flying an a hand-baggage-only British Airways economy flight – which you won’t be, because British Airways no longer flies to Helsinki.
You can bring up to one guest, although Finnair Platinum Lumo members can take up to four guests.
Note that the lounge is in the non-Schengen part of the terminal. You won’t be able to get in if you are flying from Helsinki to the majority of European countries – you’ll have to made do with Finnair’s Schengen business class lounge instead, which I will review shortly.
One of odd benefits of Britain never joining Schengen is that you often get to use a better quality of airport lounge when flying from Europe to the UK, because you are often departing from the same part of the airport as long-haul flights.
The Finnair Platinum Wing is a delightful first class lounge. Having been refurbished just a few years ago, it still feels almost-new and remained a quiet haven during my two hour stay.
The design is very Finnair: it is a very light, airy colour palette with lots of different textures and patterns including birch wood. It features the same deep blue accents that you’ll find on the new Finnair business class seat. Altogether, it looks very classy and Nordic.
The stand-out feature is the sauna, of course, and it certainly makes for a unique way to pass an hour or so whilst you wait for your flight. I’ll definitely be using the facilities again next time I’m here!
Overall, the Platinum Wing rivals some of the best lounges we have at Heathrow, including the Cathay Pacific First Class lounge in Terminal 3. Whilst very different in style, both lounges feature the same thoughtful design, a la carte dining and excellent facilities.
You can find out more about Finnair’s lounges on the airline’s website here.
How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (January 2023)
As a reminder, here are the four options to get FREE airport lounge access via a credit card:
The Platinum Card from American Express comes with two free Priority Pass cards, one for you and one for a supplementary cardholder. Each card admits two so a family of four gets in free. You get access to all 1,300 lounges in the Priority Pass network – search it here.
If you have a small business, consider American Express Business Platinum instead.
Additional lounge visits are charged at £20. You get four more free visits for every year you keep the card.
There is no annual fee for Amex Gold in Year 1 and you get a 20,000 points sign-up bonus. Full details are in our American Express Preferred Rewards Gold review here.
HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard gets you get a free LoungeKey card, allowing you access to the LoungeKey network. Guests are charged at £20 although it may be cheaper to pay £60 for a supplementary credit card for your partner.
The card has a fee of £195 and there are strict financial requirements to become a HSBC Premier customer. Full details are in my HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard review.
PS. You can find all of HfP’s UK airport lounge reviews – and we’ve been to most of them – indexed here.